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Detailed Photos: Hamada Pistols (7.65mm and 8mm)

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The Hamada pistols were two of the few examples of Japanese military arms made by private companies rather than government arsenals. Hamada ran a shop making sporting arms before the war (and after), and converted his production to a .32ACP blowback pistol of his own design for the military to use. It was a successful […]

Savage Prototype Longslide .380 (Video)

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Savage made just a few experimental long-slide versions of their pistols (most of the ones out there are fakes made by modifying existing guns). Personally, I think that this version in .380 would have made an excellent officer’s service sidearm for many European militaries at the time. Most did not see a need for a […]

Greener MkIII Police in a 2-Gun Shotgun Match (Video)

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Every few years, there is a special 2-Gun match at my local club, using shotgun and pistol instead of rifle and pistol. The rules of this match are a bit different than most multigun competition that uses shotgun, in an attempt to make the competition more practical and realistic, and less of simple a speedloading […]

Vintage Saturday: Royal Finance Police

Four Italian WWI soldiers of the Regia Guardia di Finanza (Royal Finance Police)

 

These four Italian soldiers, all of them wearing the Model 1909 uniform, belong to the Regia Guardia di Finanza ( Royal Finance Police) and they have three different types of badges on their hats.

From left to right: The soldier without a hat is a sergeant holding a Beretta Model 1915 pistol […]

Disassembly photos: Simson Prototype Blowback 9mm

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In the late 1920s, the Simson company built a handful of prototype pistols for consideration by the German military. Noises had been made about replacing the Luger with something more cost effective, and several companies moved to design options. The Simson pistol was chambered for the 9x19mm Parabellum cartridge (as the military wanted), but was […]

2-Gun Action Challenge Match: US WWI Infantry (M1917 & M1911)

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In this month’s 2-Gun match, I am competing as a WWI US infantryman, with an M1917 Eddystone rifle and an M1911 pistol (both are genuine WWI-era originals). I am also using a reproduction US 1917 uniform from Mike’s Militaria. It’s a fantastic quality reproduction, made from the same patterns and materials as the originals, and […]

RIA: Nambu 15-Shot Type A Experimental

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Before the Type 14 Nambu pistol was developed to replace the “Papa” Nambu, Kijiro Nambu experimented with a high-capacity design with a 15-round magazine. This pistol was called the Type A Experimental, and was designed around 1920. Only 15 or 20 were made, and they show elements of both the Papa and the Type […]

RIA: Reifgraber .38 S&W Automatic

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Designed by Austrian immigrant Joseph Joachim Reifgraber, this is a prototype gas-assisted short recoil pistol in a .38 rimmed revolver cartridge. While this version did not see any serial production, the Union Firearms Company of Toledo (Ohio) did market a slightly smaller model in .32 S&W (and .32 ACP). The gas-assist, as described in […]

RIA: Walther P38 Development

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The Walther P38 was adopted by Germany in 1938 as a replacement for the P08 Luger – not really because the Luger was a bad pistol, but because it was an expensive pistol. Walther began development of its replacement in 1932 with two different development tracks – one was a scaled-up Model PP blowback […]

RIA: Japanese 8mm Hamada Pistol

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Just as production of the .32ACP Type Hamada pistols was reaching full scale, Bunji Hamada was asked to redesign his pistol to use the standard 8mm Nambu cartridge. This he did, and after several changes required by the Army (which appear to have had more to do with giving the Army some claim to […]